Soprano Erie Mills, born in Granite City, Illinois, is a graduate of the College of Wooster (Ohio) and the University of Illinois. From 1977 to 1979, she trained as a Houston Grand Opera Studio artist, and during the 1978–79 season she made her debut in Houston as Zdenka in Richard Strauss’s Arabella. During a 25-year career, she sang with many of the world’s leading opera companies. A noted coloratura specialist, some of her principal roles are Zerbinetta in Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos (which she has sung at the Hamburg and Vienna state operas and the English National Opera in London and in Houston and Boston); Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia (including at the Metropolitan and New York City operas); Cunegonde in Candide (New York City Opera, Cleveland Orchestra, Hollywood Bowl); the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor (New York City Opera); and Giunia in Mozart’s Lucio Silla (La Scala, Milan). She sang the role of Sin-Cha in Bruce Adolphe’s Mikhoels the Wise in its 1982 world premiere at the Ninety-second Street Y in New York. Mills is also active on the concert platform and as a recitalist, and on recordings she can be heard in Sondheim’s Follies with the New York Philharmonic and in the New York City Opera production of Candide (Grammy award winner). Mills was professor of music at San Jose State University from 1998-2008, and maintains a private studio devoted to the vocal training of young professionals.
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